New data from a study published online in the journal Addiction show that cannabis users tend not to use the drug in combination with alcohol. The results apply to both medical and recreational marijuana users.
The article presents a survey of use patterns among participants aged 18-91. Researchers with the RAND Drug Policy Research Center and the University of California, Irvine interviewed 2009 participants from Colorado, Washington, Oregon and New Mexico. Marijuana has been legalized for recreational use in the first three states and is legal for medical purposes only in New Mexico.
The article finds that “Individuals who use cannabis do not commonly use it with alcohol, irrespective of whether they are consuming cannabis recreationally or medically.”
The relationship between marijuana and alcohol remains unclear. Some studies have indicated that marijuana users may replace alcohol with marijuana, while others indicate that the two may serve as complements.
The study also found that recreational use rates are the highest in Oregon and Washington.
Cannabis has been legalized in Colorado, Washington, Oregon, Alaska and Washington D.C., and at least ten different states are expected to vote on the issue this November, including California, Massachusetts, and potentially Arizona.